Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Metaswitch Acquires Colibria for Enhanced Mobile Messaging

Metaswitch Networks has acquired Colibria, a developer of enhanced instant messaging, presence and network address book solutions for service providers. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Colibria's portfolio consists of:

(1) SIP Instant Messaging Server - providing rich multimedia messaging infrastructure components for all IP/IP capable networks, and building the basis for the evolution to Convergent IP Messaging (CPM)

(2) SIP Presence Server - providing key enablers such as real time status and service availability, enhancing Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), driving Push to Talk over Cellular (PoC), and fundamental to the GSMA's Rich Communication Suite (RCS).

(3) XDMS Servers - providing contact, group, list, and policy management for Presence, IM, and Network Address Book deployments.

(4) Social Network Gateway - integrating and interfacing messaging and presence with existing services like Windows Live Messenger and Facebook Chat.

Colibria is based in Norway.

"Operators around the world have quickly come to realize that it is time to turn up the heat on their over-the-top competitors," said Kevin DeNuccio, CEO at Metaswitch Networks. "The way people communicate is quickly evolving from just voice and text to a new, richer set of social interaction and contextual calling services. Metaswitch is in the middle of this transformation, helping service providers address these demands and putting their brand front and center in the new communications experience. Colibria technology will play a key role in making this happen."

Metaswitch said the Colibria acquisition complements its recently launched "Thrutu" service, a unique in-call content sharing experience that enables mobile users to impulsively exchange information during a call.http://www.metaswitch.com http://colibria.com

  • Colibria was founded in 2000 and its investors included Verdane Capital, Ferd Venture, and Bjørgvin.

BBC: Pensioner Cuts Off Armenia's Internet

A 75-year old woman in Georgia who was scavenging for copper scraps cut a fiber cable thereby serving international connectivity for all three wholesale Internet providers in Armenia -- ArmenTel, FiberNet Communication and GNC-Alfa, according to the BBC. Service for entire nation of Armenia was disrupted on March 28.http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-12985082

Procera Appoints Juniper Exec as VP of Global Solutions Engineering

Procera Networks has appointed Shawn Sweeney as Vice President of Global Solutions Engineering. Mr. Sweeney most recently served at Juniper Networks for over four years in a senior leadership position. He joins Procera to lead the company's technical field and solutions organization and further its position as the leader in delivering Intelligent Policy Enforcement (IPE) solutions based on advanced deep packet inspection (DPI).

In addition, Procera Networks this week announced initial orders with a combined value of over $2.75 million for a first phase deployment at a leading cable MSO and a Tier-1 fixed/mobile operator. These two European service providers have a combined customer base of over 100 million subscribers.

Toyota Picks Microsoft for Next Gen Telematics

Toyota Motor Corp. has formed a strategic alliance with Microsoft o build a global platform for next-generation telematics services using the Windows Azure platform.

As part of the partnership, the two companies plan to participate in a 1 billion yen (approximately $12 million) investment in Toyota Media Service Co., a Toyota subsidiary that offers digital information services to Toyota automotive customers. The two companies aim to help develop and deploy telematics applications on the Windows Azure platform, which includes Windows Azure and Microsoft SQL Azure, starting with TMC's electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles in 2012.

"This new partnership between Microsoft and Toyota is an important step in developing greater future mobility and energy management for consumers around the world. Creating these more efficient, more environmentally advanced products will be our contribution to society," said Akio Toyoda, president of Toyota Motor Corp. "To achieve this, it is important to develop a new link between vehicles, people and smart center energy-management systems."http://www.microsoft.com http://www.toyota.com

Irish Operators to Share Mobile Infrastructure

Telefonica O2 Ireland and eircom agreed to share their mobile network infrastructure.

The agreement between the competing operators brings greater cooperation in a number of areas of mobile network sharing such as site equipment, power supply, technology and transmission sharing. Wherever possible, existing sites of both operators will be consolidated and new sites will be jointly built. A dedicated team, made up of existing network staff from both organisations, will be established to manage the day-to-day build and operation of the distinct networks.

Speaking on behalf of eircom Group, CEO Paul Donovan said, "It is imperative that our industry continues to invest in both fixed and mobile platforms to underpin Ireland's national recovery. The current economic realities require all operators to think creatively on how to operate more efficiently. This new collaboration between two of the largest operators in the Irish market demonstrates how working together we can deliver tangible benefits for customers."

Stephen Shurrock, CEO of Telefonica O2 Ireland, said, "We continue to see strong demand from consumers and businesses alike for higher bandwidth services, as mobile data usage grows. Today's announcement will enable us to not only deliver new and enhanced services, including faster broadband speeds, but also to do it in a much more efficient way, providing the best mobile infrastructure for the customer and the economy alike. There is a strong strategic requirement for greater collaboration and focus in the area of investment in helping to accelerate the introduction of new technologies and O2 is delighted to be at the forefront of this development."http://pressroom.eircom.nethttp://www.o2online.ie

TELUS Plots its Urban LTE Rollout for 2012

Telus will makes its LTE debut early 2012 in major markets across Canada. Following extensive field testing in 2011 and the completion of an RFP process currently underway, TELUS expects to begin construction on its 4G+ LTE network in the latter half of 2011.

TELUS' LTE network will operate on the Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) spectrum that TELUS purchased for $882 million in Industry Canada's auction process in 2008. The launch of 4G+ over 1700/2100 MHz AWS spectrum is the first stage in the upgrade to LTE. While services offered in 2012 will begin the evolution to LTE in major urban centres, the completion of the rollout into rural Canada will be dependent on the Industry Canada auction of frequencies in the 700 MHz band.

TELUS said the timing of its planned LTE launch in 2012 is appropriate and opportune given its desire to leverage the economies of scale in the manufacturing of LTE equipment, the hardening of LTE technology for market readiness, the progression in the development of LTE-capable data devices and smartphones and the need to synchronize the higher bandwidth capabilities of LTE with the accelerating appetite of clients for data rich services.

"It will be critical for the Federal Government to enable an equitable opportunity for TELUS to acquire 700 MHz spectrum in the auction planned for late 2012 to support our plans to expand availability of 4G+ LTE wireless service to rural markets. TELUS is eager to play a leading role in bridging the digital divide between urban and rural Canada such that all Canadians can benefit from broadband wireless LTE technology. The demand for mobile broadband is expanding at a tremendous rate and is a fundamental enabler for business productivity and the benefits consumers experience from the availability and ongoing development of thousands of creative mobile applications. Furthermore, the rollout of wireless broadband to as many Canadians as possible will elevate Canada's connectedness, expanding the reach of critical social services including the best technology, practices and expertise in healthcare and education," said Darren Entwistle, president and CEO of TELUS.

TELUS also noted that these plans are consistent with its consolidated capital expenditure targets.http://

Parks Associates: 7 Billion Consumer/Home Devices by 2015

Parks Associates is forecasting that there will be more than seven billion consumer and home network devices worldwide by 2015, creating a substantial foundation for cloud solutions.http://www.parksassociates.com/connwebcast

Telefónica Picks Sandvine for Policy Control and Traffic Management

Telefónica has selected Sandvine's network policy control solutions to provide detailed visibility and reporting of network usage across the company's global footprint in over twenty countries. The deployment will impact over 250 million subscribers worldwide. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Sandvine's solution collects data from the operator's network, using the Sandvine Policy Traffic Switch (PTS) platform, then organizes and displays it intelligently for executive management analysis. This technique helps Telefónica to both make business decisions based on a vast amount of actionable information and enforce actions to launch new programs and policies within the network.

"As a global company, Telefónica's network insight and business intelligence is key to understanding how we can better serve our vast subscriber base worldwide," said Vicente San Miguel, CTO, Telefónica Corporate. "Working with Sandvine since 2008 has brought us closer to understanding and acting on the needs of our customers, while improving revenue opportunities and the cost-effectiveness of our network."

In one use-case, Telefónica's UK subsidiary, O2, is helping reduce consumer bill shock, in compliance with the new European Union Data Roaming regulation, using Sandvine's Quota Management solution. Sandvine's solution monitors subscriber roaming usage in real-time and proactively keeps subscribers informed of their usage through automated messaging that notifies subscribers when they are nearing and surpassing their quota.

At another subsidiary, Telefónica recently introduced a menu of tiered pricing plans that accommodate subscribers' personalized network usage patterns and budgets. These plans were designed with the help of Sandvine's Business Intelligence solutions and are enforced in the network by Sandvine's Usage Management product. Under this model, subscribers can choose from plans that range from a basic email or social networking plan, to more comprehensive plans that also cover real-time entertainment usage.http://www.sandvine.com

DISH Acquires Blockbuster

DISH Network, which serves 14.1 million satellite TV customers, was the winning bidder in the bankruptcy court auction for substantially all of the assets of Blockbuster, Inc. DISH Network's winning bid was valued at approximately $320 million. After certain adjustments are made at closing of the transaction, including adjustments for available cash and inventory, DISH Network expects to pay approximately $228 million in cash to acquire Blockbuster at the closing which is expected to occur in the second quarter of 2011.

"With its more than 1,700 store locations, a highly recognizable brand and multiple methods of delivery, Blockbuster will complement our existing video offerings while presenting cross-marketing and service extension opportunities for DISH Network," said Tom Cullen, executive vice president of Sales, Marketing and Programming for DISH Network. "While Blockbuster's business faces significant challenges, we look forward to working with its employees to re-establish Blockbuster's brand as a leader in video entertainment."

DISH Network lost approximately 156,000 net subscribers during the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2010, giving the company approximately 14.133 million subscribers at year-end. The number of net subscribers gained for the full year ended Dec. 31, 2010, was approximately 33,000.http://www.dish.com

ITU-T Advances G.hnem Recommendations

The G.hnem standard has entered the final stages of approval at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU).

G.hnem will leverage low frequency (9-500 KHz) powerline communications (PLC) for smart meters, energy management systems, electric vehicle communications, control and home automation. Links will offer performance of up to 1 Mb/s and can operate in the CENELEC as well as the FCC bands. Various improvements incorporated into G.hnem include significant blocking of impulsive noise, improved cross-phase signal propagation, and increased robustness under challenging powerline conditions.

The new standard consists of two new recommendations: G.9955 (PHY and system architecture) and G.9956 (DLL). The two G.hnem standards ITU-T G.9955 and G.9956 contain the physical layer specification and the data link layer specification, respectively, for narrowband OFDM power line communications transceivers for communications via alternating current and direct current electric power lines over frequencies below 500 kHz. These ITU-T standards support indoor and outdoor communications over low voltage lines, medium voltage lines, through transformer low-voltage to medium-voltage, and through transformer medium-voltage to low-voltage power lines in both urban and long distance rural communications.

The schedule at ITU-T calls for the completion of final Approval of both Recommendations later this year.

The HomeGrid Forum welcomed the milestone. "We are delighted that the ITU-T has been able to develop the G.hnem Recommendation in just a year," said Lantiq's Dr. Vladimir Oksman, Chairman of the HomeGrid Forum's Smart Grid Working Group. "This is a great step forward in collaboration between the ITU-T, the IEEE, SAE, ISO/IEC and HomeGrid Forum, with HomeGrid Forum leading in the ITU-T's development of this next generation of PLC. This new Recommendation is a significant move as it represents the ITU-T's first step in the smart grid arena, promoting interoperable devices and opening new global markets to innovative PLC products. The HomeGrid Forum has been one of the leaders in the ITU-T's development of this next generation of PLC."

Malcolm Johnson, Director of the ITU Telecommunication Standardization Bureau, said: "Reaching Consent for G.hnem PHY and DLL Recommendations is a significant milestone and demonstrates just how effectively this industry can work together for the benefit of everyone. We particularly acknowledge the hard work of the HomeGrid Forum, whose members have embraced this important work from the outset and have shown sustained support and commitment in helping us reach this stage."http://www.homegridforum.org

Ciena Selected by Lightower for Digital Video Transport

Lightower Fiber Networks, a leading metro fiber network and bandwidth service provider, has selected Ciena to deliver a native video transport solution for a leading global entertainment content and broadcast company. Ciena's native video transport solution supports standard and high-definition (HD) uncompressed video signals such as 3 Gbps HD-SDI. It automatically adapts to the signals being transmitted to multiple studio locations, delivering the right capacity in the right format at the right time. In addition, Ciena's video solution allows real-time monitoring and management, thereby protecting the broadcaster's investment as their bandwidth needs increase with the proliferation of HD content.

The Ciena-based solution includes the ActivSpan 565 Advanced Services Platform, a compact and cost-optimized metro WDM platform that enables a variety of video, data and storage services to be efficiently aggregated onto an optical wavelength-based network or service. Along with the members of Ciena's ActivSpan 5000 Series, ActivSpan 565 supports video circuit packs that offer flexible and highly reliable video interfaces in addition to a complete set of diagnostic and monitoring tools specifically adapted to the broadcast industry.http://www.ciena.com

Frontier Expands ROADM Network with Tellabs

Frontier Communications has deployed approximately 345 Reconfigurable Optical Add-Drop Multiplexer (ROADM) systems to enhance optical network flexibility and manageability and improve the customer experience. By mid-year Frontier will have added more than 6,500 miles of ROADM network. The dynamic optical network being deployed is based on Tellabs Optical Solutions, including the Tellabs 7100 Optical Transport System and the Tellabs 7100 Nano Optical Transport System.

Frontier's Packet-Optical Transport Network can now deliver more than 30 different types of residential or business services such as Ethernet (Fiber to the Office or Cell Site), Session Internet Protocol (SIP) trunking, Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) and Dedicated Internet Access Services (DIA).http://www.frontier.com

Verizon: Packet Optical Transformation


Verizon's Glenn Wellbrock, Director, Optical Transport Network Architecture & Design, discusses Packet Optical transport.http://www.verizon.com